“ The fact is, Sir,” the waiter answers with a leer, “it's my doing.
There are two of you; a pint is little enough for one; and our Commissioner
dare not serve you a second time to-day.
I told him the order meant one pint for each.”
My own enquiries satisfy me that the man is right.
Intoxicating drinks are classed with poisons, such as laudanumn and arsenic; but as poisons may be needed in a civilized country, under a scientific system of medicine, laudanum and arsenic are permitted to be sold in every civilized city.
Such is here the case with brandy, beer, and wine, which are all carefully registered in books and kept under lock and key. These poisons are doled out, at the discretion of this officer, in small quantities, very much as deadly-nightshade and nux vomica are doled out by a London druggist.
“ Cannot you get a bottle of cognac for your private use?”
I ask Colonel Fairbanks
, manager of the scale factories.
“ I can write my order for a pint of cognac; it will be sent to me, of course; but my order for it will be filed, and the delivery entered on the public books for everyone to see.”